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The Numbers Behind The Rankings

Saturday, December 1, 2007
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What makes a company "Most Admired for HR"?

Every year, researchers at the Philadelphia-based Hay Group work with Fortune magazine to compile that publication's "America's Most Admired Companies" listings, published in the spring. The universe of eligible companies is taken from the revenue-based Fortune 1000 company list.

Several foreign-based companies with large U.S. operations, such as Toyota, are also included in that universe.

To create the "America's Most Admired" rankings published in Fortune, Hay polled 3,322 executives, directors and securities analysts. They were asked to rate companies within their industry sector, on a one-to-10 scale, according to eight "attributes of reputation." Several of the eight criteria are financial in nature (including "financial soundness" and "long-term investment"), but four of the eight can be considered to reflect more directly on the success of the company's HR function.

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Specifically, those four HR-related "attributes of reputation" are people management, management quality, innovation and product/service quality.

The Hay Group extracted individual company ratings within those four categories, then averaged those to create the firm's overall HR-based ranking within the "America's Most Admired Companies" universe.

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